With Max Scherzer trying to keep his unbeaten streak alive before heading into the All-Star break, he had to face one more team, the Texas Rangers.
The game started off with three shutout innings by both Scherzer and Rangers’ ace Derek Holland. However, in the second inning, Jurickson Profar hit a line drive catching Scherzer in the left wrist, or his non-throwing arm. Scherzer was able to keep pitching, but it seems that it might’ve made Scherzer struggle in the next couple of innings.
But, then the Rangers struck first, when A.J. Pierzynski hit a sacrifice fly to left, scoring Nelson Cruz. Scherzer couldn’t rebound, as in the same inning, he gave up a two-run home run to Mitch Moreland, his thirteenth of the year, giving the Rangers a 3-0 lead.
In the next inning, the Tigers tried to strike back, as Hernan Perez hit a two out, RBI single, making the score 3-1. Pierzynski added another RBI, this time a double, coming in the fifth.
The next runs came in the ninth, as the Rangers added more insurance runs. This time, the three runs came off a Nelson Cruz single, and an Adrian Beltre two-run home run.
Scherzer only lasted six innings, giving up eight hits, four earned runs, and striking out six. His record dropped to 13-1, ending his unbeaten streak. As for Holland, the lefty improved to 8-4, going seven strong.
“He probably wasn’t as dominant, but he still gave us a chance to win and kept us close,” outfielder Torii Hunter said. “We just couldn’t get any run support for him. Tonight, we failed him.” (ESPN)
Scherzer, arguably one of the most dominant pitchers in the AL, finally got roughed up, losing his first game of the season. Scherzer didn’t have trouble with his strike out numbers, managing to strike out six batters in six innings. He wasn’t on his best game, surrendering eight hits, the highest amount all season. His era rose to 3.19 and his whip to 0.98.
As for Holland, he had another very solid outing. A downside to his eighth win was giving up five walks, a season-high. Holland like Scherzer struck out as many batters as he pitched innings. He also strikes out a ton of batters, as his K/9 rate is in the high eights. His era was lowered to 3.08 but his whip stayed at 1.28.
The Miguel Cabrera Watch:
Miguel Cabrera went 1-3 with a single, a walk, and a strikeout. Cabrera still leads the MLB in average and rbi, but is now down by six home runs, after Baltimore Orioles’ first baseman Chris Davis hit his 36th home run of the season.
The final game in the series will come Sunday, at 1:08 EST. This game will determine who wins the series, which is currently tied 1-1.
Tomorrow’s probable starters are Martin Perez and Justin Verlander. Perez is 3-1 with a 2.08 era on the season. As for Verlander, the struggling ace is 9-6 with a 3.71 era.